Feb 22, 2018 by Jorge Preciado
Though a majority of older adults experience gradual vision deterioration in their golden years, vision impairments are not an integral part of aging. Nowadays, many vision disorders can be prevented or successfully managed if diagnosed in their early stages. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common vision issues affecting the senior population:
Dry eye syndrome occurs when a lack of tears or poor quality of tears leads to insufficient lubrication of the eye. Symptoms include blurry vision, stinging, eye redness, and irritation. In home care providers point out that these symptoms can be reduced with the use of artificial tears, eye drops and/or ointments that help restore the natural moisture of the eyes and keep them lubricated.
Low vision is a term used to categorize vision impairments that cannot be fully corrected through medical treatment, surgery or glasses. As there is no way of reversing low vision, certain lifestyle changes, vision training, and devices for the visually impaired are often recommended. Seniors with low vision problems may even require assistance from a family or professional in home care provider, as performing simple tasks such as preparing meals, cleaning, or driving might become challenging.
A decrease in vision due to clouding of the eye’s natural lens is known as a cataract. Older adults who have problems with cataracts may experience blurred vision, reduction in their ability to differentiate between colors, poor night vision or double vision. Treatment options include wearing glasses or contact lenses or undergoing surgery to replace the deteriorated natural lens with an artificial one.
Glaucoma is a group of progressive eye disorders characterized by unusually high eye pressure. If untreated, this amplified intraocular pressure can permanently damage the tender fiber of optic nerves and even cause blindness. For early detection, in home care providers recommend regular eye screenings. Eye drops, prescribed medication, and laser surgery are some of the most common options for treating glaucoma.
AMD is a vision impairment that affects the macula, which is a minuscule part of the retina needed for sharp, centralized vision. Seniors diagnosed with AMD can experience difficulties with tasks that require focused vision such as reading or driving. The effects of macular degeneration can be reduced with supplementation, prescribed pharmaceuticals, and vision aid devices.
By regularly checking their eyes for early disease detection and with the help from a family or in home care provider, seniors can maintain their independence, enjoy good vision, and lead a happier, healthier lifestyle for longer.